VHP warns of 2008-like agitation over WP refugee row

Asks Governor to pass ordinance granting citizenship rights to the refugees

The rightwing Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) Tuesday warned of 2008-like agitation in the State if the West Pakistan (WP) refugees were not granted citizenship rights and asked Governor to pass ordinance to give rights of permanent residency to them.
“We have written to Governor to immediately issue an ordinance for the permanent settlement of West Pakistan Refugees in Jammu and Kashmir and providing a compensation of Rs 30 lakhs to each refugee family,” senior VHP leader, Rajesh Gupta told Rising Kashmir.
He said the party would launch 2008-agitation if WP refugees were not settled in the State and given state subject status.
“Our agitation would have multiple impacts more than 2008 Amarnath land row agitation,” Gupta said.
He said the Joint Parliamentary Committee has strongly recommended Permanent Resident Certificate and voting right for WP Refugees, Rs 30 lakhs package per family of WPRs and displaced persons from Pakistan administered Kashmir, reservation for jobs in armed forces, representation in both houses of J&K Legislative Assembly and reservation of 8 seats for displaced persons.
Gupta also demanded one time relief package for Chhamb refugees of 1965 and 1971. “We also demand compensation, tenancy/ occupancy rights on EP property and land, compensation for land deficiency, and other benefits for Chhamb refugees”.
He further demanded that Wadhwa Committee report and its recommendations should be made public within six months.
Leader of West Pakistan Refugees, Laba Ram Gandhi told that they are living in Jammu and Kashmir since 1947.
“We demand citizenship right, which is our fundamental right,” he said.
Gandhi said those opposing the permanent settlement of West Pak refugees are playing politics on the humanitarian issue.
“Jammu and Kashmir is the part of India and we have right to be here as its citizen,” he said and alleged that people from Punjab and other areas have illegally settled in the State with fake state subjects but their settlement is not opposed.
Stating that over 10, 000 families of West Pak Refugees are living in the state, Gandhi said separatists are alleging that demography will be changed if WP refugees are settled in State but what about the illegal settlement of outsiders in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Separatists are trying to create differences among people of different communities,” he alleged and said their settlement will not change demography of the state since they are already living in J&K since 1947.